My late grandfather owned a tire shop that specialized in retreading tractors. I can imagine Kristine Mifsud finding nearly all of her materials in the back of his garage, and I can picture his appreciation of her vision; he too was a sculptor. What Mifsud does with small bits of used metal and rubber is transformative, though in a way opposite that of a traditional sculptor, who must carve away stone to find the shape that lurks within. Mifsud accumulates, adding this piece and that until something elegant and evocative—and entirely new—emerges. A red rubber pocket with the word FULLER fills with narrow coils and tubes, all of them relieved to finally be together. Two small, heavy canisters wear rubber caps that join their tops, a pair meant to be. Best of all is a thin hole-punched chit hanging from a length of nylon, suspended between a washer, a rubber oval and another metal scrap: the curve in that string is a catenary. Jasper Johns painted an entire series about them. It takes an open mind and a finely tuned vision to find the makings of high art in the gutter.

—Lori Waxman 11/13/16 3:49 PM
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